Another one of those funny pieces of financial behavior that I’ve been doing for a while but is maybe weird?
For background, I rarely have all my credit cards showing $0 at once. It seems like the second I pay them off, a pending charge shows up–I have a fair number of automatic charges now. Monthly donations to charities, car insurance, newspaper subscription, hulu subscription. Or, as has been the case for months now, I’m waiting for reimbursements for a work trip and so those charges are just kind of hanging out on the card. (This is a series of work trips, not one! I usually get reimbursed within a couple of weeks if my own institution is paying for it, or a month to six weeks if another institution is sending me a check.)
I finally got the last of the reimbursements last week though and most of my automatic payments hit in the last two weeks of the month so for several glorious days, I was showing $0 debt when I looked at mint.
Then I made a $25 donation and my $13 local newspaper subscription came through. Plus, on a second card, I bought $15.30 of gas.
And I felt compelled just now to go pay both of those off, even though I won’t even get the bills for another few weeks and the payments wouldn’t actually be due til a month after that.
Back in the day when I got credit card statements mailed to me, I used to just write a check for the whole amount once a month. I’m not quite sure why I feel so compelled to clean up behind me now — I do this a lot. Except for those things I’m going to get reimbursed for or charges that hit at the very end of the month, it’s quite rare for anything to actually make it to a bill.
I guess I’m wondering — is there a problem with this? Besides the minor psychological problem of wanting to see $0s. Does it bug companies when you make half a dozen small payments over the course of a month rather than just sending in one at once? Or is the thing that bothers them that I never pay interest (which isn’t going to change) rather than the quantity of small payments?